It’s hard buying a present for a man. Whether it’s Father’s Day, Valentine’s Day, Christmas or his birthday, women through the ages have agonised over finding suitable gifts for the men in their lives.
Guys have it easy – if all else fails, buy a woman flowers, chocolate or jewellery and you can’t fail to please her. But what options do girls have? Another novelty tie or pants? More aftershave or random sports paraphernalia? There’s got to be a better way to find a present for your partner that’s thoughtful and creative, interesting and unique.
What’s more, sometimes it’s the way you present the gift that can be more meaningful than the actual ‘thing’ itself. Whether it’s a birthday or special anniversary, or for no reason other than that you want to show your love, gifting romantically is a sure fire way to get his attention.
What makes your man special?
Before you even start thinking about getting your purse out, spend some time thinking about your beloved – and I mean really think about him. What sort of person is he? What makes him tick? What are his main qualities and particular interests?
Is he the outdoorsy type or glued to a computer screen for most of the day? Is he into sports or music, books or films? Is he the strong, silent type or more openly affectionate? Outgoing and sociable or shy and introverted? A bit of a lad or more of a ‘new man’?
Once you have a clear focus on the type of guy he is, you’ll be able to recognise more easily the type of gift idea that would appeal to him, that he would appreciate and enjoy.
1. Surprise, surprise!
Sometimes the best presents are the ones that are least expected. Rather than choosing an item from a carefully pre-planned Christmas list (where’s the fun in that?), surprise your man with a spontaneous ‘thought’ that really shows him that you care.
For best effect, why not sneak in and decorate his car, desk or room with confetti or petals, placing your gift right in the middle of it all? Then wait for him to open the door and capture his reaction on your smartphone.
The gift itself can be anything you like. A new shirt from a brand you know he adores? How about a movie night to see the latest blockbuster release? Choose an IMAX near you for a special treat and follow up with a takeaway on the way home. Book a supercar driving experience for him and a friend for the ultimate guys’ day out and see his little boy’s eyes light up. The important thing is that he’ll love it.
2. Making memories
There’s nothing to say that the present needs to be a ‘thing’ that comes wrapped in a box. Rather than giving him more ‘stuff’, however much thought may have gone into purchasing the item, many men prefer not to have too much clutter around them. Instead, think in terms of shared experiences that you can both look back on with fondness in years to come.
For adventurous types, how about finding an exciting activity you can do together? Or a calm and relaxing experience you can both enjoy? From a camping/cycling weekend in the New Forest to a day at an Aquapark, getting tickets for a music festival or taking a couples’ massage class, none of it need cost the Earth and the memories you make may well bond you even closer together.
3. Set him a task
If you’re not going down the surprise route, or your gift is for a special occasion such as a birthday or an anniversary, your OH will no doubt be expecting something. If you can sense that he’s excited about a gift you’ve promised, you can increase his sense of anticipation by making him work for his present.
It’s all about the thrill of the chase. Start by presenting him with an envelope containing a set of clues that will guide him towards his gift, or organise a full blown treasure hunt that has the gift at the end of it. Set him a quiz with questions that are particular to your relationship, or make him read a heartfelt letter or poem you’ve written to express your feelings before he gets his gift.
If he’s the competitive type, you could also challenge him to a board game or video game that he has to win before he finally receives his present. Do make sure you let him win.
4. All you need is love
Finally, don’t lose sight of the overriding reason why you’re gifting – love conquers everything! Material things very often aren’t the best vehicle to convey the strength of your feelings, so why not do something entirely personal?
Rather than showing your love by spending lots of money, spend some time crafting a long love letter that puts down on paper how grateful you are for having him in your life. Make it a poem, or write a song if that works better for you.
Use your creativity rather than your wallet and make a video or a slideshow, record a song or create a photo album, paint a picture or use whatever other talents you have. You could draw up a long list with all the big and little things that you appreciate about him – add some humour so you can both laugh and cry when you read it together.